Google has released an early preview of the Android 3.0 software development kit (SDK). Android 3.0—codenamed Honeycomb—introduces Android’s new tablet user interface, which is expected to officially debut next month on Motorola’s Xoom tablet. Developers will be able to use the SDK preview to get a head start on updating their applications to support the tablet form factor.
The SDK also offers Android enthusiasts an early look at the new tablet user interface. It includes a partial Android 3.0 environment that runs in the Android emulator. Due to the emulator’s glacially slow performance, however, we weren’t really able to get an accurate feel for the responsiveness of the interface. The following screenshots highlight some of the major characteristics that differentiate Honeycomb’s tablet interface from Android’s conventional smartphone interface, but keep in mind that it’s still just a preview build for developers and might not accurately represent what the platform will look like on an actual product.
The Honeycomb home screen comes with sophisticated scrolling widgets and can accommodate much more content than the conventional Android home screen. Like the traditional Android home screen, it still comes with multiple pages that the user can rotate through by swiping right and left.